Scunthorpe recovered from an initial Newcastle onslaught, that was like a steam train leaving the station and quickly accelerating to top speed.
Andy Carroll celebrates first goal after 10 minutes
And it was only offsides, the cross-bar and some good goalkeeping from Joe Murphy that somehow managed to keep the score down to just two goals by half-time.
After the game Scunthorpe manager Nigel Adkins talked about Newcastle United:
“Newcastle are a top side, a Premier League side, the champions in waiting.” “We knew coming here was going to be a massive challenge for everybody.”
“The players have been able to see how hard they’ve got to work, in and out of possession.”
“That’s the bench mark in Newcastle and it’s been good for some of the youngsters to see how much they have got to keep improving and not think they have made it.”
“To be 2-0 down after 20 minutes, you would have probably thought Newcastle would have run away with it, but credit to the players, they’ve only gone and lost the second half 1-0.”
And a relaxed but in-control Newcastle manager Chris Hughton refused to confirm the reality that five more wins would now clinch Newcastle an instant return to the Premier League.
And that is even assuming that Nottingham Forest wins all of their remaining 9 games, and they still have to come to St. James’ Park.
After the game Chris Hughton completely refused to get carried away with anything:
“Yes it’s my job to keep expectations on the ground, but I don’t see it being difficult to bring them back down to earth,”
“It’s understandable people outside of the club, the supporters, will think we’re going to get promoted, but it won’t be difficult with this group of lads.”
“They are very focused on what they want to achieve.”
It certainly seems the Newcastle players are focused like a laser on their remaining games, and they will not get carried away with anything – not after what happened last season.
But things are starting to look very bright on Tyneside – once again.
Howay The Lads!!